ATLANTA — Sen. David Perdue on Friday conceded the runoff race to Jon Ossoff, making official an extraordinary sweep by Ossoff and fellow Democrat Rev. Raphael Warnock to establish Democratic control of the U.S. Senate.
According to official results, Perdue trails Ossoff by exactly 1%, about 45,000 votes, with very few left to count. There was no longer any chance that he might make up the kind of ground to reach the 0.5% recount threshold.
He had led Ossoff by nearly 2% in the November general election, but did not clear the 50% + 1 threshold to avoid the runoff.
Perdue served one term in the Senate, succeeding Saxby Chambliss in 2015. He said that term "has been the honor of a lifetime" in a statement:
"Bonnie and I are deeply grateful for the support millions of Georgians have shown us this year and in the six years since we first ran for the United States Senate. Serving our home state has been the honor of a lifetime, and I am very proud of how our team in Georgia and Washington, D.C. fought every day to deliver real results for all eleven million Georgians.
"Although we won the general election, we came up just short of Georgia’s 50% rule, and now I want to congratulate the Democratic Party and my opponent for this runoff win. Bonnie and I will continue to pray for our wonderful state and our great country. May God continue to bless Georgia and the United States of America."
On Twitter, Gov. Brian Kemp thanked Perdue for his service in the US Senate and vowed to work with Ossoff and the incoming Biden Administration "to serve the people of our state and put hardworking Georgians first."
Kemp also congratulated Ossoff on the win.
Perdue's loss, coupled with that of Sen. Kelly Loeffler and President Donald Trump, underscores a remarkable and abrupt shift in the balance of power in Georgia's politics.